North Carolina Republicans’ Latest Judicial Power Grab May Have Backfired Spectacularly – Slate

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In 2016, Democrat Mike Morgan won a hotly contested seat on North Carolina’s state Supreme Court, flipping the court to a 4–3 liberal majority. Ever since, Republicans in the state have engaged in a great deal of chicanery to prevent Democrats from winning another seat in 2018. For a while, they appeared destined to succeed. But a last-minute twist may thwart their carefully laid plans, allowing yet another progressive Democrat to flip a Republican-held seat in the November election.

The North Carolina Supreme Court plays a major role in the state’s politics due largely to the sharp split between the governor and legislature. Republicans hold a super-majority in the North Carolina General Assembly thanks to a racial gerrymandering that has been ruled illegal, while Democrat Roy Cooper serves as governor. Since Cooper won in 2016, Republicans have passed a series of laws stripping his office of power and entrenching GOP rule. (Cooper has attempted to block these extreme measures, but the legislature can easily override his veto.) The state Supreme Court, however, has managed to strike down Republicans’ more egregious power-grabs by consistent 4–3 votes, ruling that they violate the state constitution. (Read more)

Keith Ellison Just Made North Carolina Politics A Democratic Party Fight – The Huffington Post

The Watch Dog response: I am glad that Rep. Ellison has figured it out. It appears that the Democratic Party is sitting back waiting and watching the Republican Party do whatever they want to do next. The NC NAACP has been the lead dog in fighting these mean racist in the NC General Assembly. If anyone can not see how all of this is racist then obviously you don’t see the bigger picture. I will not spend time trying to make you understand because if you connect the dots you will see so don’t focus on me focus on what is happening in Raleigh with the good ole boys.

WASHINGTON ― The wild battle over the future of North Carolina state politics became a central fight in the future of the Democratic Party on Friday, as Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) joined state lawmakers to denounce Republican efforts aimed at eliminating the political power of incoming Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat.

“It’s wrong,” Ellison told reporters on a conference call. “And we have to stand against it. It’s undemocratic. It’s un-Republican. It’s un-American.”

The Republican-controlled state legislature introduced bills on Wednesday evening designed to undercut the administrative abilities of the state’s governor, giving outgoing incumbent Gov. Pat McCrory (R) the power to sign away his successor’s authority. The bills drastically limit Cooper’s ability to make appointments to various state boards and departments and require confirmation hearings for the appointments ― giving GOP lawmakers an opportunity to stifle basic state government staffing decisions. (Read more)

C Supreme Court upholds GOP-drawn legislative, congressional districts – News & Observers

RALEIGH — Twelve months after hearing arguments in the case, the N.C. Supreme Court issued a ruling Friday upholding the Republican-led redrawing of state congressional and legislative districts in 2011.

But the NAACP and other organizations that challenged the maps quickly announced plans to continue their legal battle against districts they contend are blatant racial gerrymandering intended to weaken the African-American vote.

“It is certainly regrettable that the North Carolina Supreme Court has sanctioned the use of race bias by the North Carolina General Assembly in an unlawful effort to promote and protect the political interests of extremist elements of the Republican Party,” Irving Joyner, a Durham attorney representing the NAACP, said Friday. “This decision is contrary to any political redistricting effort that the United States Supreme Court has ever approved.” (Source: Read more)

North Carolina Republican Calls It Quits With GOP, Joins Democratic Party – Addicting Info

North Carolina Republicans enacted the worst voter suppression laws in the nation this past summer. And because of that and the general extremism of the entire party, one House candidate has switched his allegiance from the GOP to the Democratic Party.

Here’s why Jason Thigpen, an NC house candidate and war veteran, renounced the GOP and joined the Democratic party.

War veteran Jason Thigpen had been a member of the Republican Party. He was even running for Congress on the GOP ticket in North Carolina. But no longer. The purple heart recipient officially renounced the GOP in a message on his website on Monday. (More)

Dems: No job plan in McCrory’s budget – WRAL

Response: So why would one think that he would have a job plan when Republicans in Washington DC have not had one since President Barack Obama has been in office. What a damn shame that they continue to show their ignance just because “we” have a Black President.

The Rural Center and the Golden Leaf Foundation are two great resources and it will be devasting to NC with the proposed cuts.

Raleigh, N.C. — Legislative Democrats say Gov. Pat McCrory’s $20.6 billion budget proposal is a flop when it comes to jobs, schools and rural communities.

"It does nothing to create jobs and grow our economy, and at the same time, it continues to cut education," House Minority Leader Larry Hall said at a midday news conference. (More)

Read more

McCrory budget focuses on schools, efficiency – Charlotte Observer

Tillis: Fraud ‘not the primary reason’ for voter ID push – WRAL

State House Speaker Thom Tillis signaled what could be a change in messaging on voter ID Saturday – and dropped some hints about the details of upcoming legislation – during an appearance on MSNBC.

The left-leaning news channel might not seem like an intuitive choice for an appearance by Tillis, a Republican, but MSNBC has spent much of the day covering the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland. (More)

John Hood: Political parties have evolved a long way in past 25 years–Rocky Mount Telegram

Response: This sort of address my question: When Black Folks Used To Be Republicans And The Republican Party Of Today, Well!

If you see the two major political parties as more polarized and more ideological than they used to be, congratulations! Your Spidey sense is working. But let’s be sure to interpret those tingles accurately.

According to a new survey from the Pew Research Center, Democrats and Republicans are further apart today than they were in the past on many issues. (More)